- Travelling is fun, but planning a trip can be extremely stressful.
- But there are small things you can do to alleviate some of that pressure, which includes booking leave days in advance and making the best out of the tech available to you.
- Here are four travel hacks for seamless holiday planning.
If you're anything like me, you love travelling but hate the admin and stress that comes along with it.
Seriously, no matter how many times I tell myself that I won't panic, I still end up huffing and puffing as I scramble to manage last-minute bookings and locate travel documents.
But getting to your destination doesn't have to be a traumatic process. In fact, it could actually be part of the fun if done the right way.
Here are four travel hacks for seamless holiday planning.
1. Booking ahead
Even if you have yet to decide on a destination, booking your leave days ahead of time is a great place to start. This travel hack ensures that your time away from work is set in stone, making your planning much easier.
So, if you want to travel in June, book your leave days as early as February, if possible. This also gives you extra time to reflect on where you'd like to travel and allows for a few months of saving.
2. A travel fund
While we're on the topic of saving cash, a travel fund will help alleviate any financial pressure you may have ahead of a big trip.
"Ultimately, holidays should be something we look forward to rather than another anxiety point in our already stressful lives. Remember that sensible saving habits can go a long way toward ensuring that's the case," says Upnup's Ricki Allardice in a press statement.
"For example, for those of us looking to plan for international or big local family holidays a few years into the future, perhaps combining the approach of saving with innovation and technology could help us. Opting to stay local these holidays and continuing to save for an out-of-country trip in the future means that you don't have to compromise on your next holiday."
READ MORE | He lived on Table Mountain as a baby and returned on his 79th birthday
3. Technology is your friend
These days it's easy to book a trip directly from your phone. Technology allows us to do everything from checking in to your flights online, using apps to find interesting spots to visit, or taking virtual tours of a place beforehand.
Make use of apps like Jurni to find some of SA's hidden gems, from towns to accommodation and activities.
For me, a big part of alleviating travel stress is being able to plan an itinerary before I travel so that I make the most out of each day, and apps allow me to do that easily.
READ MORE | Anyone can live and work in Svalbard visa-free -- just don't run out of money, and abide by its rules
4. Supporting local
While we all may crave a big international trip, exploring SA can be just as magnificent. And, let's face it, a lot less stressful in the planning department. So, if you want to go away for a little while, why not make it a local adventure?
"Responsible tourism has taken on an entirely new emphasis as South African travellers turn their attention to the most effective ways to enable their own economy to further recover from the fallout of the global Covid-19 pandemic," notes Clinton Thom, General Manager at Radisson Blu Hotel Waterfront.
"There has been a great shift among travellers to first think local before they decide to spend their hard-earned money in other parts of the world."